Common problems beset an Audi after it reaches around 100,000 to 150,000 miles. The maintenance costs and parts replacements might be a little on the high side, but owners have the assurance that these replaced parts are worth their prices.
It usually takes about 150,000 to 250,000 miles before Audis start having problems. Cars from German luxury car brand Audi typically work well with minimal maintenance, averaging about 13,500 miles per year.
This figure depends on how well the car was maintained and the conditions of use. Using the sports car, Audi TT, and high-performance race car, Audi R8, as specific examples, we find out that the TT follows this trend while the R8 is just a little less.
Compared to their direct rivals, the Mazda MX-5 Miata still works well for at least 200,000 miles or the Chevrolet Corvette that doesn’t give any problems till the 200,000-mile mark. It means that these Audi cars last less than their rivals.
The next issue is the issues that arise from Audi mileage problems and why Audis fail after the 150,000-mile mark when their rivals do better.
Reasons for Audi Mileage Problems
One of the reasons for the failure of Audis is old age. Constant grind for ten to fifteen years is enough to cause the failure of any machine, even finely engineered ones like cars. Some parts will still fall apart with age even with regular maintenance checks on their Audis.
Some problematic parts like the water pump, clutch, and cam belt usually wear out with age—some even faster than the recommended replacement mileage. In the case of the R8’s clutch, it can be said that it is a combination of age and quality of parts since the clutch wears out around 20,000 miles.
The oldest R8s are about fifteen years (they started manufacturing them in 2006) have age-related issues even though they are used to high-performance levels. A leaking magnetic suspension, bad air conditioner compressor, and carbon buildup are all caused by aging.
Quality of Materials and Parts
Audi produces luxury cars; the TT and R8 are labeled as luxury cars in their categories. It is a luxury brand doesn’t mean that all the parts and materials are long-lasting or top-quality. Let’s take have a cursory look at the Audi R8, its magnetic suspension, even though it is innovative, doesn’t last long.
Its life span is about 15,000 miles which is the low side, and worse, Audi’s warranty doesn’t cover it.
There are some parts that do not last. The power window controls of the Audi TT don’t last long because of using inferior quality materials. The controls get damaged easily, leading to discomfort for the owners who can’t control their windows and additional costs for repairs.
The production process of the Audi TT is one of the reasons they have mileage problems. The TT shares some parts with other Audi cars (those on the A platform) to reduce costs. This cost-saving measure helps on the bottom line but doesn’t guarantee long life.
The parts are mass-produced, which means not a lot is spent on research and development. In the end, these efforts at streamlining production and reducing costs reflect on the longevity of the TT.
Audi Maintenance Costs and Price of Parts
To highlight mileage effects, we look at two 2010 Audi cars; the 2010 Audi TT Quattro and the 2010 R8. The estimated cost for maintenance service for the 2010 Audi TT Quattro, including labor costs, is around $568. This estimate works with the assumption that the mileage at this time is 75,000 miles.
For the 2010 Audi R8, the maintenance costs are pretty higher. Audi advises minor routine maintenance procedures every 10,000 miles and a front axle replacement after ten years or 120,000 miles. The average yearly maintenance costs of the Audi R8 is estimated at $3,000.
Now let us move to the costs of replacement parts for both the TT and the R8.
Average Cost for Audi Parts
These are the estimated costs for some Audi R8 parts.
- Windshield $1,300
- Four sets of new tires $1,500
- Carbon Fiber Sides $2,600
- Front Grille $795.99
- Rear Bumper $947.62
- Four sets of 4.2L V8 Fuel Injectors $294.71
- Front right R8 Front Suspension Shock Absorber $469.30
- Pair of V10 Air Filters $60.00
- Rear Brake Pads $159.42
- Fuel Pressure Relief Regulating Valve $128.76
These are the estimated costs of Audi TT Quattro parts
- Water Pump $344.78
- Radiator Condenser Fan Assembly $84.39
- Radiator $84.99
- Alternator $297.80
- Brake Master Cylinder $99.99
- Rear Drilled Brake Rotors $128.86
- AC Compressor $538.05
- Direct-Fit Catalytic Converter $211.00
- Set of 2 Front Wheel Hubs with Bearing $69.66
The cost of replacing R8 parts is relatively high. This high cost is expected as the R8 is a supercar. Relatively, the 2010 Audi TT parts are cheaper but are still quite expensive for their class. Routine maintenance costs for both cars are also relatively high for their categories.
Perhaps we can find other cheap cars that can do decently well under higher mileages—
Are Audis Reliable?
The reliability of Audi cars depends on the level of maintenance and genuineness of the parts used when they are replaced. Genuine Audi parts are expensive but durable. Audi TT has a reliability and safety rating of four stars out of five stars.
Audi is ranked 16th higher than reputable car brands like BMW and Mercedes.
The 2010 R8 has a three-star J.D. Power Predictability rating, which puts it at about average. In comparison, the 2010 TT has 4.5 stars out of a possible five from its customers’ reviews. All this means that though the average lifespan of both cars is about ten years, drivers still find both cars good enough to buy.
Here are some of the things potential buyers of used Audi cars should note about Audi cars and their mileage.
The fact that an Audi has a high mileage doesn’t necessarily mean that the car is terrible. It just means that the vehicle has done a lot of work (which is why they were built). Also, the fact that a car has low mileage doesn’t mean that the wear and tear of the car parts are expected. The most important thing is the level of maintenance of the previous or current owner.
Though an Audi with low mileage commands a higher resale value, you can still find a bargain with a car with high mileage.
Common Audi Problems
- Cam Belt
Audi has advised TT owners to replace their car’s cambelt when its mileage gets to 80,000 miles. The sad fact is the cambelt of the TT starts to fail around 60,000 miles.
- Instrument Cluster
This instrument cluster problem is quite common; several dials on the instrument cluster start to fail after a while. These failures include indicator lights and meters like the rpm and speedometer.
- Water Pump
Audi TT’s water pump also has an advisory from Audi for owners to change it when the car mileage gets to 80,000 miles. Like the TT’s cambelt, the water belt also requires replacement at 60,000 miles.
- Gear Box
The Audi TT’s Direct Shift Gearbox has often received complaints from users about hesitancy when driving. More often than not, the reason for this hesitancy is a busted mechatronics unit that costs an arm and a leg.
In most used Audi TTs, the suspension gives a knocking sound caused by lousy roll bar bushes.
- Coil Pack
Another mileage problem for Audi TTs is misfiring while the car’s engine is idling. The reason for this is a lousy coil pack in the machine. Bad coil packs don’t only affect the TTs. Many Audi cars also have coil problems after a while.
- Air Mass Sensor
One mileage problem of the TT is a jittery ride due to a bad air mass sensor called air mass meter. After a while, the air mass sensor fails and has to be replaced.
- Electric Window Switch
Constant use of the electric windows leads to its breaking down after a while. Some believe that the reason for this is the quality of the materials used.
- Excessive Oil Usage
Another Audi problem is burning oil, using a large amount of engine oil. It usually starts around 64,000 miles. Issues arising from burning oil typically cost a few thousand dollars to fix.
- Bad Piston
Audi owners don’t often complain of bad engines pistons, but it happens. A few Audi cars have this problem around 48,000 miles. It’s a good thing terrible engines don’t happen much because they cost as much as $8,500 to fix.
Most R8 clutches need to be replaced when the car mileage is around 20,000 miles.
Other parts of the Audi R8 that fail due to mileage are; lower rear wishbones, magnetic dampers, and in some cases, the V8 engine variant of the R8 have some bottom-end bearing failures or lousy ignition coils that causes misfiring.
To summarize, common problems beset an Audi after it reaches around 100,000 to 150,000 miles. The maintenance costs and parts replacements might be a little on the high side, but owners have the assurance that these replaced parts are worth their prices.
When your cars are approaching these mileage milestones, be vigilant, watch out for the standard parts that usually fail, fix and replace them, and avoid Audi mileage failure.
You could do your due diligence and get a good car from the start. Here are a few starters cars that may pique your interest—